Have you ever been asked to speak to your local Chamber of Commerce or Rotary Club? Do you feel honored and excited, or do you avoid this high-value network situation at all costs because of a fear of speaking in front of groups? Today and tomorrow, Promotional Consultant Today speaks to the advantages and pay-offs of speaking to service clubs.
Meet Brenda. She was a successful hairstylist in San Francisco’s financial district. At the encouragement of her mentor, she attended the Dale Carnegie Public Speaking course and then became a Toastmaster. The hair product company she was affiliated with hired her to deliver seminars for other stylists who carried their product line.
Conversations with her executive clients about her weekend speaking activities led to invitations to speak at their Rotary, Kiwanis and breakfast clubs. When she exceeded their expectations, the executives recommended her customer service talks to their companies for staff meetings. What Brenda was delighted to discover was that speaking for groups in her community was a very effective way to help build her business.
Why Should You Give Free Talks?
Service clubs do not pay a fee. However, you are paid in a currency that is far more valuable: visibility and access to new contacts who are part of your local community where you do business.
Talking about your business is exciting, fun and provides great visibility. Your first talks to local service organizations such as Rotary, Kiwanis and Optimists lead to many more invitations. Remember, every service club is looking for a free speaker for next Thursday.
Compiled by Cassandra Johnson
TOP SHELF TIP NO. 46
“Do not let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.”
Even though your business may be promotional products, an effective speech will bring you recognition and eventual business. Even if you talk about your hobbies, interests or charity of choice, your introduction will mention your business. You will be networking and meeting new, local business professionals.
What Should You Talk About?
What do you know that other people want to know about? What do you know that other people should know? What are the questions people ask you most often about your business or industry?
Speaking at a service club or any local group is an excellent starting point for promoting your product or service. But remember, no one is eager to listen to a sales presentation. Your goal is to be interesting, informative and even entertaining. This leads to the audience members wanting to have a conversation with you. A conversation can lead to a friendship, a client or a referral.
Want to know more? Read PCT tomorrow to learn how to get those invitations to speak to service organizations.
Source: Patricia Fripp CSP, CPAE, is a Hall of Fame keynote speaker, executive speech coach, sales presentation skills trainer, and keynote speaker on sales, memorable presentation skills and executive communication skills. She works with organizations and individuals who want to put their best foot forward by gaining powerful and persuasive presentation skills.